News / Middle East

Tensions Escalate Between US, Israel Over Iran Nuclear Talks

Tensions Escalate Between US, Israel Over Iran Nuclear Talksi
X
November 22, 2013 12:07 AM
The U.S. alliance with Israel is being strained by deep disagreements over a possible deal with Iran regarding that country’s controversial nuclear program. VOA correspondent Meredith Buel reports.
Meredith Buel
The U.S. alliance with Israel is being strained by deep disagreements over a possible deal with Iran regarding that country’s controversial nuclear program. 

It was just eight months ago that President Barack Obama visited Israel.  It was the first foreign trip of his second term - designed to improve relations with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, which have been stressed over the Palestinian conflict.

But now the two men are at serious odds again - this time over nuclear negotiations with Iran.

Benjamin Netanyahu:

"It's clear that this agreement is good only for Iran, and that it's really bad for the rest of the world.  Iran's dream deal is the world's nightmare," he said.

Israel is concerned Iran is too close to building a bomb - and wants its nuclear capabilities rolled back. Iran says its program is peaceful, and the U.S. is pressing international diplomacy to resolve the dispute.

Dennis Ross, a former senior advisor on Iran to President Obama, sees merits in Israel's position.

“Even if you are slowing the clock or freezing it, you are freezing it at a level that basically is unacceptable.  Because that level would allow the Iranians to have a break out capability and you are not reversing the program," said Ross.

The U.S. stance has also angered another key ally in the region: Saudi Arabia.  In what analysts see as an unprecedented development, Israel and many Sunni Arab nations are aligned in their concerns about Iran.

Adam Ereli, a Middle East expert and former U.S. Ambassador to Bahrain, says this puts the U.S. in a delicate position.

“Let’s not forget our close and steadfast and important allies in the region who not only rely on us, but who we rely on for our national security," said Ereli.

Israel has threatened to bomb Iran if it gets too close to making a nuclear weapon, despite U.S. efforts to tone down the harsh rhetoric.  Analysts don’t believe Israel will attack during negotiations between world powers and Iran.

But analyst Robert Satloff says Israel's impatience is growing.

“I think the likelihood of Israeli military action against Iran has gone way up," said Satloff.

Satloff says the current Israeli government feels it has been left out in the cold.

That could have a negative impact on the Middle East peace process, which the U.S. is spearheading.

“And that is because the crisis of confidence between the United States and Israel will have an impact on this diplomacy," said Satloff.

Looking away from the U.S., Netanyahu has met with the Presidents of France and Russia to appeal for tough terms on a nuclear accord with Iran.

Despite the deep disagreements with Netanyahu., Secretary of State John Kerry says the Obama administration will not let down its key ally.

“We believe deeply in our commitment to Israel, deeply, " said Kerry.

Kerry says the United States will not accept any deal that allows Iran to buy time to increase its nuclear capability and further threaten Israel.

You May Like

Video Miami Cubans Divided on New US Policy

While older, more conservative Cuban Americans have promoted anti-Castro political movement for years, younger generations say economically, it is time for change More

2014 Sees Dramatic Uptick in Boko Haram Abductions

Militants suspected in latest mass kidnapping of over 100 people in Gumsuri, Nigeria on Sunday More

Video Cuba Deal Is Major Victory for Pope

Role of Francis hailed throughout US, Latin America - though some Cuban-American Catholics have mixed feelings More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Sudan School Becomes Target of Aerial Attacksi
X
December 19, 2014 12:45 AM
The school dropout rate is at an all-time high in Sudan's South Kordofan state because many schools have been destroyed during the three-year civil war between the government and SPLA-N rebel forces. Adam Bailes visited Sudan's Nuba Mountains' region and reports many children are simply too scared to go to school
Video

Video Sudan School Becomes Target of Aerial Attacks

The school dropout rate is at an all-time high in Sudan's South Kordofan state because many schools have been destroyed during the three-year civil war between the government and SPLA-N rebel forces. Adam Bailes visited Sudan's Nuba Mountains' region and reports many children are simply too scared to go to school
Video

Video VOA Reporter Tours Devastated Peshawar School

Islamist militants wearing military uniforms and strapped with explosives attacked a military run school Tuesday in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar. At least 141 people were killed in the horrific attack, most of them young students. VOA reporter Ayaz Gul visited the devastated school and attended the funeral of the principal who courageously tried to save her students from the deadly attack.
Video

Video Nigerians Fleeing Boko Haram Languish in Camp Near Capital

In its five-year effort to impose Islamic law in northeastern Nigeria, the Boko Haram extremist group has killed thousands of people and forced hundreds of thousands to flee. Some of those who ran for their lives now live in squalor on the edges of the capital, Abuja. Chris Stein reports for VOA.
Video

Video Putin Says Russian Economy Will Emerge Stronger

Russian President Vladimir Putin has said his country's sinking economy will not only recover but also become stronger, despite falling oil prices and Western sanctions over Ukraine. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports.
Video

Video Detained Turkish Journalists Follow Teachings of US-Based Preacher

The Turkish government’s jailing of critical journalists has sparked international condemnation and is being seen as an effort to undermine the followers of an ailing Turkish preacher based in the United States. VOA religion reporter Jerome Socolovsky has more.
Video

Video ‘Anti-Islamization’ Marches Increase Tensions In Germany

Anti-immigrant rallies in Germany have been building in recent weeks, peaking Monday night in the city of Dresden where tens of thousands of people turned out to demonstrate against what they call the ‘Islamization’ of the West. Germany has offered asylum to more Syrian refugees than any other country, and this appears to have set off the protests. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Aceh Rebuilt Decade After Tsunami, But Scars Remain

On December 26, 2004 there was an earthquake in the Indian Ocean so powerful it caused the Earth’s axis to wobble a few centimeters. Onshore on the island of Sumatra, the resulting tsunami was devastating. A decade later, VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from Banda Aceh, Indonesia, where although there is little remaining evidence of the physical devastation, the psychological scars among survivors remain.
Video

Video Refugees Living in Kenya Long for Peace in the Home Countries

Kenya is host to numerous refugees seeking safe haven from conflict. Immigrants from Somalia face challenges in their new lives in Kenya. Ahead of International Migrants Day (December 18) Lenny Ruvaga has more for VOA News from the Kenyan capital.

All About America

AppleAndroid